No matter what you’re expecting They Look Like People will likely end up giving you more than that.
We weren’t quite sure what to expect from They Look Like People other than a low-budget mystery, horror movie that was heavily focused on the characters. And while we certainly did get this, we also got a lot more. In particular, this is a truly remarkable look at friendship and loyalty. Not in the naive or gullible way, but in the most basic way; When friends need help, you help them.
In the case of They Look Like People one of the main characters, Christian, has been dealing with self-esteem issues, but seems to have overcome these. Mostly anyway. The other main character, Wyatt, is dealing with mental illness in quite a different way. He has been told that he’s schizofrenic and acknowledges this as he looks for help – both from his friend and a health care professional – but still, he’s not quite sure that everything he’s experiencing is due to his mental illness.
And because he’s not sure what’s real and what isn’t, we aren’t either. This means we’re trapped right there in his illness and worldview with him. It’s elegant and it really works. The story unfolds slowly and little by little through dreams, flashbacks and small hints, you start to fit the pieces together. This is very deep and dark, but in its portrayal of mental illness it does remind me of The Voices starring Ryan Reynolds from 2014.
The cast in They Look Like People primarily consists of three people, with an additional two in small key parts. The primary cast of Wyatt and Christian are portrayed by MacLeod Andrews and Evan Dumouchel respectively and they do a wonderful job. The two also doubles as producers on the film. Their portrayal of friendship is honest, believable and the relationship and chemistry just works on every level. We could all hope to have a friendship like these two portray. The third person in the primary cast is Mara, played by Margaret Ying Drake, which is yet another unfamiliar face to me, but she gives a very realistic and natural portray of a young woman dealing with both work and relationships of all kinds.
They Look Like People is available via VOD
Director: Perry Blackshear
Writer: Perry Blackshear
Cast: MacLeod Andrews, Evan Dumouchel, Margaret Ying Drake
Suspecting that people around him are turning into evil creatures, a troubled man questions whether to protect his only friend from an impending war, or from himself.